By Tahav Agerzua

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, at the weekend expressed the willingness of the state government to assist the Bill Gates Foundation to establish animal feeds factory.
He spoke when coordinator of the project, Mr. Adewale Ajadi, Country Director of Synergos Nigeria Limited visited him at the Benue Peoples House.
The Governor stated that there was need to add value on agricultural produce in the state in order to boost the earnings of farmers as well as the economy of the state.
He noted that before the discovery of oil the country survived on agriculture stressing that with the current challenges in the petroleum sector the best option was to return to the farm and that any investment in agro processing was a step in the right direction.
Governor Ortom commended the initiative added that he had forwarded an anti-open grazing bill to the Assembly for passage into law as a measure to end the persistent farmers’ and herders’ crises in the state.
According to him the state government was willing to provide a platform for a private sector based initiative to establish the animal feeds factory utilizing the abundant cassava in the state.
He directed the Benue Agriculture and Rural Development Agency, BNARDA, to provide an office for the desk officer of the project.
Earlier, Mr. Ajadi had disclosed that the Foundation was looking for a private collaborator with the guarantee of the state government for the establishment of a livestock feeds manufacturing industry using cassava as its raw material.
He said the Foundation was ready to build the capacity of local farmers and work with the state government to ensure the take-off and sustenance of the project.

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